This poem was contributed by Year 12 poet Phoebe Fan
Watch it burn, the remains
Of the skeleton, the kindling
Dried under scorching sun, the light
Under which crackles the bark,
Split-open and weeping, the wounds
Baking as the ground
Seems as if to ripple; the distortion
Of heat haze.
Watch it catch aflame, the kindling
With glorious liquid pillars, the light
Too bright to stare at, the bark
Which blackens under it all, the wounds
Unholy as they shrivel and flake, and the ground
Accepts this unwanted offering; the distortion
Made manifest in the ashes
Watch it disperse, the piercing light
Of a thousand fires, the bark
Unobservable to the eye, the wounds
A failed cauterisation – the ground
Seems to tremble, a warning of the distortion
Unnatural, while the ashes
Are swept away by a hand,
Hidden and elusive.
Cast eyes upward seeing, the smoke
Trailing paths of thin grey, the fragments
Wisp-like and ethereal as the dance
Breathe in that acrid stench, the nostrils
Flaring while the stomach
Revolts and rebels against the distaste
Of what you lost.
Breathe it in, the sting.
Breathe it in, the infection.
Breath it in, the amputation.
Watch it disappear, the remnants
Of a dream; the reminder
Cruel and unwarranted.
Breathe in the fumes;
Hold it in and the exhale
Does not come with the release.
Hold it in and remember the fact
That the sky and the stars and the moon
Cannot be won before the fight.
So watch the tendrils,
As they climb and the heights
They gravitate towards.
And remember how you once